For those of you that have children, you are fully aware of the kids menu in most restaurants. Hot dogs, hamburgers, macaroni and cheese, chicken tenders, pizza, and french fries. It is rare that you see “a side of vegetables” or “salad”. How about some grilled chicken or a shrimp kebab?
My kids would love to order off of the kids menu, but I try to avoid it. An entree in most restaurants are too big for even me to finish, so I prefer my kids to find something that they like on the regular menu and share it. They don’t really know any better – it’s kind of always been that way. My brother had a friend growing up who would only eat hamburgers. He went on vacation with us one summer and eating our meals was an ordeal. I vowed that when I grew up, I would make one meal and my children would eat what we ate.
In our house, I try and recreate the “kids menu” with a healthy twist. One such dish are chicken tenders. I use organic, grass fed chicken breasts, oat flour and spices and rather then fry them, I bake them. I serve them with an apricot dipping sauce and/or my homemade barbecue sauce and both children and adults devour the meal. I usually make a big batch and freeze the left overs.
Homemade Chicken Tenders
yield: about 24-28 chicken tenders
1 1/2 lbs. boneless, skinless, organic chicken
1/2 cup oat flour
1 cup panko bread crumbs
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. paprika
1/2 tsp. Celtic sea salt
1/2 tsp. white pepper
apricot dipping sauce:
4 Tbsp. apricot preserves
2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
for the chicken:
• preheat oven to 475*
• line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment and place a wire rack on top of it. spray with cooking spray.
• rinse chicken and pat dry. cut into strips and set aside.
• pound chicken to desired thickness.
• in a small bowl combine the oat flour and sea salt
• in another bowl whisk the eggs(I add 1-2 tablespoons of water and whisk all together).
• in a long baking dish, combine the panko bread crumbs, oregano, garlic powder, cumin, paprika, and white pepper.
• dredge chicken strips in oat flour, then in the egg mixture, finally coat with panko mixture. shake off excess coating. lay each piece on prepared wire rack. repeat with the rest of the chicken.
• bake chicken for 15-18 minutes or until slightly golden and the center is no longer pink.
for the apricot sauce:
• pulse the apricot preserves in a mini chopper to remove any chunks. pour into a bowl.
• add the Dijon and whisk to combine.
* if you decide to double the recipe, flash freeze the left overs. place the frozen, cooked tenders in a freezer safe container and when ready to eat, cook for about 12-15 minutes in a pre-heated 350* oven.
More Chicken Tender Recipes:
Gluten Free Chicken Tenders – Tasty Eats at Home
Chipotle Chicken Tenders – Sara’s Kitchen
Crunchy Nut Encrusted Chicken Tenders – Beantown Baker
Panko Crusted Chicken Tenders – NY Times